Day Trips out of Hanoi: Biking to Tram Gian and Thay PagodasTuesday, August 21, 2012
The one-day cycling tour is customized for active adventure travelers, family travel and those who would like to spend hours biking on village lanes in the rural Hanoi. The tour starts at about 7:00 am in the morning and ends up about early afternoon. The day biking tour is provided with support vehicle, experienced English-speaking tour guide, meals, mountain bikes, bottled drinking water and snacks. The best time to do this one-day bicycle tour is autumn or spring when the weather is cool and the rice fields are green.
7:00 am: You will be met up with Lotussia Travel team at your hotel in Hanoi (Please advise your hotel name and hotel contacts upon your confirmation). You will be then transferred by car to the outskirts of Hanoi.
As the car leaves the Hanoi busy streets your guide will give a short briefing about the day tour, the biking trail and other useful information.
After about a half hour drive, the first stop will be made. You will take your bike out of the car and start your cycling adventures. You turn right following a small village lane leading to Hoa Binh village. The ride is easy as you bike on paved road without up and downhill ride. You pedal through popcorn fields, vegetable gardens and passing by smiling faces.
You will bike through this small rural village and reach the river dyke. Keep cycling on the dyke further to the west. Enjoy beautiful rural scenery along the ride. You may have a chance to visit a local market which is open twice a week following the lunar calendar.
You then cross the river and enjoy some more rides before arriving in Tram pagoda. The pagoda was built in early 16th century by a General. It is exactly located at Tu Tram mountain, an architecture that combines architecture of pagoda in North, mountain architecture, and natural cave.
It is possible for you to have short rest by the pagoda before continue bicycling to Tram Gian pagoda. This portion of the road is also flat without much traffic. If you arrive here around 11h00 you will meet up with lots of local pupils going out their school. They are happy to pedal along with you as they are keen to see foreigners and to try practice English.
After about one more half hour biking, you will arrive Tram Gian pagoda. Tram Gian Pagoda is the folk name of the pagoda which is also known as So Pagoda, Nui Pagoda and Tien Lu Pagoda. The pagoda is thought to have been built in 1185 during the reign of King Ly Cao Tong and sits on top of a low hill named Tien Lu. The pagoda keeps precious artifacts such as a stone dragon of the Tran Dynasty made as a banister, many bricks of the Mac Dynasty used to build a Tam The (past, present and future lives) statue, and many paintings and bas-reliefs depicting animals and Arhats.
You may wish to spend a little time visiting the pagoda before taking an off-the-beaten path road which goes through rice fields, vegetable gardens and noodle village. This portion of the biking trail is the highlight of the day since the cycling trail is beautiful, off-the-beaten path offering authentic life scenery. There you may want to make a stop by a local house to learn how the noodle is made.
Keep cycling until you find the dyke again where you turn right following a paved road. You may want to cycle a bit more before making another stop for lunch.
After lunch, you upload the bikes on your vehicle and get transferred by car to Thay pagoda. Built in the 11th century during the reign of King Ly Nhan Tong, Thay Pagoda consists of three sections: the outer part for offerings and ceremonies, the middle part for worship of Buddha and the inner part for worship of the monk Tu Dao Hanh, the master after whom the pagoda is named.
Visit the pagoda and travel back to Hanoi. Arriving back in Hanoi at about 16:00 – 17:00, you will be dropped off at your hotel. Trip ends.
Need further information? Either mail to travel at lotussia.com or visit www.lotussiatravel.com